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14 Websites to Download Research Paper for Free – 2023
Download Research Paper for Free
Table of contents
2. z-library, 3. library genesis, 4. unpaywall, 5. gettheresearch.org, 6. directory of open access journals (doaj), 7. researcher, 8. science open, 10. internet archive scholar, 11. citationsy archives, 13. dimensions, 14. paperpanda.
Collecting and reading relevant research articles to one’s research areas is important for PhD scholars. But for any research scholar, downloading a research paper is one of the most difficult tasks. You must pay for access to high-quality research materials or subscribe to the journal or publication. In this article, ilovephd lists the top 14 websites to download free research papers, journals, books, datasets, patents, and conference proceedings downloads.
Download Research Paper for Free – 2023
14 best free websites to download research papers are listed below:
Sci-Hub is a website link with over 64.5 million academic papers and articles available for direct download. It bypasses publisher paywalls by allowing access through educational institution proxies. To download papers Sci-Hub stores papers in its repository, this storage is called Library Genesis (LibGen) or library genesis proxy 2023.
Visit: Working Sci-Hub Proxy Links – 2023
Z-Library is a clone of Library Genesis, a shadow library project that allows users to share scholarly journal articles, academic texts, and general-interest books via file sharing (some of which are pirated). The majority of its books come from Library Genesis, however, some are posted directly to the site by individuals.
Individuals can also donate to the website’s repository to make literature more widely available. Z-library claims to have more than 10,139,382 Books and 84,837,646 Articles articles as of April 25, 2023.
It promises to be “the world’s largest e-book library” as well as “the world’s largest scientific papers repository,” according to the project’s page for academic publications (at booksc.org). Z-library also describes itself as a donation-based non-profit organization.
Visit: Z-Library – You can Download 70,000,000+ scientific articles for free
The Library Genesis aggregator is a community aiming at collecting and cataloging item descriptions for the most part of scientific, scientific, and technical directions, as well as file metadata. In addition to the descriptions, the aggregator contains only links to third-party resources hosted by users. All information posted on the website is collected from publicly available public Internet resources and is intended solely for informational purposes.
Unpaywall harvests Open Access content from over 50,000 publishers and repositories, and makes it easy to find, track, and use. It is integrated into thousands of library systems, search platforms, and other information products worldwide. In fact, if you’re involved in scholarly communication, there’s a good chance you’ve already used Unpaywall data.
Unpaywall is run by OurResearch, a nonprofit dedicated to making scholarships more accessible to everyone. Open is our passion. So it’s only natural our source code is open, too.
GetTheResearch.org is an Artificial Intelligence(AI) powered search engine for search and understand scientific articles for researchers and scientists. It was developed as a part of the Unpaywall project. Unpaywall is a database of 23,329,737 free scholarly Open Access(OA) articles from over 50,000 publishers and repositories, and make it easy to find, track, and use.
Visit: Find and Understand 25 Million Peer-Reviewed Research Papers for Free
DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals) was launched in 2003 with 300 open-access journals. Today, this independent index contains almost 17 500 peer-reviewed, open-access journals covering all areas of science, technology, medicine, social sciences, arts, and humanities. Open-access journals from all countries and in all languages are accepted for indexing.
DOAJ is financially supported by many libraries, publishers, and other like-minded organizations. Supporting DOAJ demonstrates a firm commitment to open access and the infrastructure that supports it.
The researcher is a free journal-finding mobile application that helps you to read new journal papers every day that are relevant to your research. It is the most popular mobile application used by more than 3 million scientists and researchers to keep themselves updated with the latest academic literature.
Visit: 10 Best Apps for Graduate Students
ScienceOpen is a discovery platform with interactive features for scholars to enhance their research in the open, make an impact, and receive credit for it. It provides context-building services for publishers, to bring researchers closer to the content than ever before. These advanced search and discovery functions, combined with post-publication peer review, recommendation, social sharing, and collection-building features make ScienceOpen the only research platform you’ll ever need.
OA.mg is a search engine for academic papers. Whether you are looking for a specific paper, or for research from a field, or all of an author’s works – OA.mg is the place to find it.
Internet Archive Scholar (IAS) is a full-text search index that includes over 25 million research articles and other scholarly documents preserved in the Internet Archive. The collection spans from digitized copies of eighteenth-century journals through the latest Open Access conference proceedings and pre-prints crawled from the World Wide Web.
Visit: Sci hub Alternative – Internet Archive Scholar
Citationsy was founded in 2017 after the reference manager Cenk was using at the time, RefMe, was shut down. It was immediately obvious that the reason people loved RefMe — a clean interface, speed, no ads, simplicity of use — did not apply to CiteThisForMe. It turned out to be easier than anticipated to get a rough prototype up.
CORE is the world’s largest aggregator of open-access research papers from repositories and journals. It is a not-for-profit service dedicated to the open-access mission. We serve the global network of repositories and journals by increasing the discoverability and reuse of open-access content.
It provides solutions for content management, discovery, and scalable machine access to research. Our services support a wide range of stakeholders, specifically researchers, the general public, academic institutions, developers, funders, and companies from a diverse range of sectors including but not limited to innovators, AI technology companies, digital library solutions, and pharma.
Dimensions cover millions of research publications connected by more than 1.6 billion citations, supporting grants, datasets, clinical trials, patents, and policy documents.
Dimensions are the most comprehensive research grants database that links grants to millions of resulting publications, clinical trials, and patents. It
provides up-to-the-minute online attention data via Altmetric, showing you how often publications and clinical trials are discussed around the world. 226m Altmetric mentions with 17m links to publications.
Dimensions include datasets from repositories such as Figshare, Dryad, Zenodo, Pangaea, and many more. It hosts millions of patents with links to other citing patents as well as to publications and supporting grants.
PaperPanda is a Chrome extension that uses some clever logic and the Panda’s detective skills to find you the research paper PDFs you need. Essentially, when you activate PaperPanda it finds the DOI of the paper from the current page, and then goes and searches for it. It starts by querying various Open Access repositories like OpenAccessButton, OaDoi, SemanticScholar, Core, ArXiV, and the Internet Archive. You can also set your university libraries domain in the settings (this feature is in the works and coming soon). PaperPanda will then automatically search for the paper through your library. You can also set a different custom domain in the settings.
I Hope, this article would help you to know some of the best websites to download the research papers and journals for free.
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hi im zara,student of art. could you please tell me how i can download the paper and books about painting, sewing,sustainable fashion,graphic and so on. thank a lot
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15 Best Websites to Download Research Papers for Free
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Is your thirst for knowledge limited by expensive subscriptions? Explore the best websites to download research papers for free and expand your academic reach.
Today, navigating through the academic terrain often feels like being stuck in an intellectual desert, parched for knowledge.
With paywalls acting like impenetrable fortresses, accessing scholarly articles becomes a herculean task. However, a beacon of hope exists in the form of free-access platforms, quenching our thirst for intellectual wisdom. Let’s set sail on this scholarly journey.
Table of Contents
Do you recall the Z Library, a once-prominent source of free academic resources? While its seizure by the FBI was a stark reminder of copyright considerations, it also marked a transformative phase in the digital academic landscape.
Today’s champions of academia aren’t just about offering free access, they uphold ethics and copyright respectability. Let’s delve into these repositories that are reshaping the academia world. You can download free research papers from any of the following websites.
Best Websites to Download Research Papers
#1. sci-hub – best for accessing paywalled academic papers.
- Unlocks millions of academic articles
- Known as the ‘Robin Hood’ of research
- Free and easy to use
Sci-Hub is the defiant maverick of the academic sphere. Often termed the “Pirate Bay of Science,” it presents an unconventional solution to the paywall barrier, freely providing access to a vast range of scholarly literature.
What are the benefits of Sci-Hub?
- Unlimited Access: Unlocks paywalled research papers
- Extensive Database: Hosts a wide variety of academic disciplines
- User-friendly: Features a simple interface and easy navigation
Despite its contentious standing, Sci-Hub offers an invaluable service to knowledge-seekers. While navigating the tightrope between access and legality, it represents a game-changing force in the world of academic research.
#2. Library Genesis (Libgen) – Best for a Wide Range of Books and Articles
- Houses a comprehensive collection of books and articles
- Allows downloading in various formats
- Free and efficient
If the pursuit of knowledge was a grand voyage, Library Genesis, or Libgen, would undoubtedly be your trusty compass and map. Like the vast sea brimming with hidden treasures, Libgen is an expansive library with riches ranging from academic papers to rare textbooks, and even popular fiction.
It’s not just a repository, but a vibrant confluence of multiple disciplines and interests, catering to the unique intellectual appetite of each knowledge seeker.
What are the benefits of Libgen?
- Multidisciplinary: Holds resources for a vast array of subjects
- Diverse Content: Offers not just articles but also books, textbooks, and fiction
- Format Freedom: Allows content download in various formats
Libgen, with its remarkable expanse and variety, is the academic equivalent of a treasure trove. It’s a one-stop destination for researchers and readers, making it an invaluable ally in the quest for knowledge.
#3. Unpaywall – Best for Legal Open Access Versions of Scholarly Articles
- Provides legal access to millions of academic articles
- Fast and user-friendly
- Free and ethically sound
Unpaywall is the stately knight of the academic world. Upholding the banner of ethics, it gallantly charges through the battlefield of paywalls, breaking barriers and making scholarly literature accessible.
Unpaywall doesn’t just give you a key; it gives you a legal, ethically sound key to the treasure chest of academic wisdom. This website is not merely a tool; it’s a testament to the idea that knowledge should be accessible to all, without compromising on legality and respect for authorship.
What are the benefits of Unpaywall?
- Legal Access: Enables legitimate access to research papers
- Wide Reach: Features an extensive, continuously updated database
- Cost-free: All services are available without any charges
For those who believe in the harmony of free access and ethical consideration, Unpaywall is a guiding star. It reflects an ideal blend of accessibility, legality, and respect for intellectual property.
#4. Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) – Best for Peer-Reviewed Open Access Journals
- Repository of high-quality, open-access, peer-reviewed journals
- Covers all subjects and many languages
- Free to use
DOAJ is one of the most popular open access repositories that offers peer-reviewed, open-access journals across numerous subjects and languages. More than just a tool, DOAJ symbolizes the collaborative ethos of academia, fostering a global exchange of knowledge with no entry ticket.
What are the benefits of DOAJ?
- High Quality: Ensures all listed journals are peer-reviewed for quality assurance
- Wide Range: Features journals covering numerous subjects and languages
- Free Access: No cost attached to access these resources
The DOAJ, in its essence, manifests the democratic spirit of academic research. It’s an indispensable platform for researchers seeking high-quality, peer-reviewed, open-access resources across a wide range of subjects.
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#5. Open Access Button – Best for Free Versions of Paywalled Articles
- Finds legal free versions of paywalled articles
- Fast, simple, and reliable
- Free and respects copyright laws
Just like the rush of adrenaline you feel when you find a forgotten $20 bill in your old jeans, Open Access Button brings the same excitement to the academic sphere.
It is your trusty detective, sniffing out legal, freely accessible versions of those pesky paywalled articles. More than just a tool, it represents an ethical, innovative solution to the widespread issue of paywall barricades in academic research.
What are the benefits of Open Access Button?
- Legal & Free Access: Hunts for legal, open versions of paywalled research papers
- User-friendly: Easy to use with swift results
- Ethical: Respects and upholds copyright laws
Open Access Button serves as the ethical bridge between knowledge seekers and the scholarly content they need. Its commitment to providing free, legal access upholds the values of respect and fairness in academia.
#6. Science Open – Best for a Wide Variety of Open Access Scientific Research
- Features over 60 million articles
- Facilitates academic networking and discussion
- Free and comprehensive
Consider Science Open as a bustling town square in the city of scientific knowledge, where scholars from all walks of life gather, discuss, and dissect over 60 million articles.
It’s not just like the best university libraries, it’s a collaborative arena for scientists, researchers, and curious minds alike. By fostering open discussions and peer reviews, it not only disseminates information but also nourishes a robust, global scientific community.
What are the benefits of Science Open?
- Vast Library: Provides access to over 60 million research items
- Collaborative Platform: Encourages networking, discussion, and public peer review
- Comprehensive: Covers a wide array of scientific disciplines
Science Open is more than a tool; it’s a community fostering open scientific discourse. Its vast resources and collaborative platform make it a vital player in modern scientific research.
#7. CORE – Best for Open Access Content Across Disciplines
- Harvests research papers from repositories worldwide
- Features millions of open access articles
CORE is like a skilled artisan, meticulously crafting a vast tapestry of open-access content across various disciplines. By aggregating data from repositories worldwide, it weaves together a rich, comprehensive picture of global research.
This tool doesn’t merely provide access; it delivers an integrated research experience that pushes the frontiers of academia and knowledge exploration.
What are the benefits of CORE?
- Wide Coverage: Harvests data from global repositories, providing extensive coverage
- Open Access: Features millions of open access research papers
- User-friendly: Simple, efficient interface for seamless navigation
With its unparalleled aggregation and comprehensive access, CORE embodies the grand orchestra of global research. It stands as an essential tool in the modern researcher’s toolkit.
#8. ERIC – Best for Education Research
- Specialized in education research literature
- Offers a wide range of resources, including articles, reports, and studies
- Free and tailored for educators and researchers
Like an esteemed professor, ERIC curates and presents a wealth of scholarly resources for educators, policymakers, and researchers. It serves as a guiding light, illuminating the path to evidence-based practices and enriching the field of education.
What are the benefits of ERIC?
- Focus on Education: Offers a specialized collection of education research literature
- Comprehensive Resources: Includes articles, reports, studies, and more
- Tailored for Educators: Provides valuable insights and tools specifically for educators and researchers
ERIC stands as a pillar in the realm of education research, equipping educators with the knowledge and evidence they need to drive innovation and improve educational practices.
#9. PaperPanda – Best for Free Access to Research Papers
- Provides free access to research papers across multiple disciplines
- Offers convenient search and download options
- Free and user-friendly
PaperPanda is always there to assist you in your quest for knowledge. With its vast collection of research papers spanning various disciplines, PaperPanda ensures that you have the resources you need right at your fingertips.
It’s like having a personal research assistant, guiding you through the maze of scholarly literature.
What are the benefits of PaperPanda?
- Wide Range of Disciplines: Offers research papers across multiple fields of study
- Easy Search and Download: Provides convenient search and download options
- User-Friendly Interface: Makes the research process smooth and accessible
PaperPanda, with its user-friendly approach and expansive collection, simplifies the journey of accessing research papers. It empowers researchers and knowledge enthusiasts by putting a world of information within reach.
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#10. Citationsy Archives – Best for Research Papers from Numerous Fields
- Curates a vast collection of research papers
- Offers easy-to-use citation and bibliography management tools
As you navigate through the vast corridors of this digital library, you’ll discover a wealth of academic resources from diverse fields.
Citationsy Archives provides access to valuable research papers. It also equips you with powerful citation and bibliography management tools, ensuring that your scholarly journey remains organized and efficient.
What are the benefits of Citationsy?
- Extensive Collection: Curates a wide variety of research papers from numerous fields
- Citation Management: Offers user-friendly tools for organizing citations and creating bibliographies
- Comprehensive Support: Helps researchers streamline their academic workflow
Citationsy Archives serves as a haven for researchers seeking a comprehensive collection of research papers. Its integrated citation and bibliography management tools make it an indispensable companion in the scholarly pursuit.
#11. OA.mg – Best for Direct Download Links to Open Access Papers
- Provides direct download links to open access papers
- Offers a straightforward, no-frills interface
OA.mg presents a no-nonsense approach to providing direct download links to scholarly articles, ensuring that you have immediate access to the knowledge you seek. With its simplicity and efficiency, OA.mg streamlines the process of finding and accessing open access papers.
What are the benefits of OA.mg?
- Direct Download Links: Offers quick access to open access papers without unnecessary hurdles
- Simplicity: Features a straightforward interface for effortless navigation
- Efficient Access: Saves time by bypassing intermediary steps in accessing research papers
OA.mg stands as a reliable conduit between knowledge seekers and open access papers. Its focus on direct download links enhances the efficiency of accessing scholarly resources.
#12. Social Science Research Network (SSRN) – Best for Social Sciences and Humanities Research
- Specializes in social sciences and humanities research
- Hosts a vast collection of scholarly papers, working papers, and preprints
- Free and tailored for researchers in these fields
This digital haven caters to the intellectual curiosity of scholars in these fields, providing access to a wealth of scholarly papers, working papers, and preprints.
SSRN fosters collaboration and knowledge-sharing, creating a vibrant community at the forefront of social sciences and humanities research.
What are the benefits of SSRN?
- Specialized Content: Focuses on social sciences and humanities research
- Diverse Collection: Offers scholarly papers, working papers, and preprints
- Research Community: Facilitates collaboration and knowledge-sharing among researchers
SSRN serves as an invaluable resource for researchers in the social sciences and humanities, fostering a community that drives innovation and advancements in these fields.
#13. Project Gutenberg – Best for Free Access to eBooks
- Houses a vast collection of free eBooks
- Covers a wide range of subjects and genres
- Free and easily accessible
Project Gutenberg is a paradise for book lovers and knowledge enthusiasts. This impressive collection of free eBooks spans various subjects and genres, from classic literature to scientific works.
Project Gutenberg opens the doors to a world of literary exploration, providing access to timeless wisdom and captivating stories that shape our intellectual landscape.
What are the benefits of Project Gutenberg?
- Extensive eBook Collection: Offers a vast selection of free eBooks
- Diverse Subjects and Genres: Covers a wide range of topics and literary genres
- Free and Accessible: Provides easy access to literary works without any cost
Project Gutenberg serves as a testament to the power of literature and the accessibility of knowledge. It enables readers worldwide to embark on intellectual journeys through its extensive collection of free eBooks.
#14. PLOS (Public Library of Science) – Best for Open Access to Scientific and Medical Research
- Publishes open access scientific and medical research
- Features high-quality, peer-reviewed articles
- Free and promotes global scientific collaboration
As a leading publisher of open access research, PLOS fosters the dissemination of cutting-edge scientific discoveries to a global audience.
With a commitment to quality and peer-reviewed excellence, PLOS supports the collaborative spirit of scientific advancement, empowering researchers and scientists to share their findings freely.
What are the benefits of PLOS?
- Open Access Publications: Provides free access to high-quality scientific and medical research
- Peer-Reviewed Excellence: Ensures rigorous peer review for published articles
- Global Scientific Collaboration: Facilitates knowledge sharing and collaboration among researchers worldwide
PLOS stands at the forefront of the open access movement, promoting the free flow of scientific and medical knowledge. It represents the spirit of collaboration and transparency, empowering researchers to push the boundaries of human understanding.
#15. arXiv.org – Best for Preprints in Science, Mathematics, and Computer Science
- Specializes in hosting preprints in science, mathematics, and computer science
- Provides early access to cutting-edge research
- Free and fosters collaboration among researchers
arXiv.org is the epicenter of preprints in science, mathematics, and computer science. This virtual haven serves as an incubator for innovative ideas, granting researchers early access to the latest findings and nurturing collaboration within these rapidly evolving disciplines.
What are the benefits of arXiv?
- Cutting-Edge Research: Provides access to preprints, allowing early exploration of groundbreaking ideas
- Interdisciplinary Reach: Spans science, mathematics, and computer science, fostering cross-disciplinary collaboration
- Global Knowledge Exchange: Encourages the sharing of research findings and facilitates collaboration among researchers worldwide
arXiv.org stands as a catalyst for scientific progress, offering a glimpse into the future of research. By providing early access to preprints, it fuels innovation, collaboration, and the acceleration of knowledge in science, mathematics, and computer science.
In a world where knowledge is king, accessing a research paper shouldn’t feel like an impossible task. Thanks to these free and innovative websites, we can escape the barriers of paywalls and dive into a vast ocean of intellectual wealth.
From the rebellious spirit of Sci-Hub to the collaborative nature of PLOS, these digital champions are reshaping the academic landscape.
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- About Sci-Hub
Sci hub is currently available at:.
- LibGen gen.lib.rus.ec
How to access SciHub?
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sci hub tw is an alternative sci-hub proxy link. It is no longer functional but you can use one of the other links above to access sci hub in 2020.
The Swedish domain sci-hub.se used to work to unlock Sci Hub. In October 2020 it no longer works. There are alternative sci-hub links on this page.
where is sci hub
sci hub is currently located at sci-hub.41610.org
HW domain was an old hub sci domain.
where is sci hub now
Sci hub is now located at various changing sci hub proxy links. This is why this site exists, so you can always find the most up-to-date links.
hub sci is a misspelling of sci-hub.
Download Research Papers and Scientific Articles for free (Sci-Hub and Library Genesis links updated August 2022)
Many students and researchers need to find a paper for their research, to complete the review of an article, or while writing their thesis. Many papers can be found through your university library, but for those that you may not have access to through your institution, we take a look at the three largest open access sites, as well as sci hub and Library Genesis .
Unpaywall Unpaywall is a website built by Impactstory, a nonprofit working to make science more open and reusable online. They are supported by grants from the National Science Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. What they do is gather all the articles they can from all the open-access repositories on the internet. These are papers that have been provided by the authors or publishers for free, and thus Unpaywall is completely legal. They say they have about 50-85% of all scientific articles available in their archive. Works with Chrome or Firefox.
PaperPanda PaperPanda is a free browser extension for Chrome that gives you one-click access to papers and journal articles. When you find a paper on the publisher’s site, just click the PaperPanda icon and the panda goes and finds the PDF for you.
Open Access Button The Open Access Button does something very similar to Unpaywall, with some major differences. They search thousands of public repositories, and if the article is not in any of them they send a request to the author to make the paper publicly available with them. The more people try to find an article through them, the more requests an author gets. You can search for articles/papers directly from their page, or download their browser extension.
Library Genesis Library Genesis is a database of over 5 million (yes, million) free papers, articles, entire journals, and non-fiction books. They also have comics, fiction books, and books in many non-english languages. They are also known as LibGen or Genesis Library. Many of the papers on Library Genesis are the same as sci hub, but what sets them apart is that Library Genesis has books as well.
OAmg OAmg lets you search for journal articles and papers, download them, and of course cite them in your Citationsy projects. After entering a query it searches through all published papers in the world and shows you the matches. You can then click a result to see more details and read a summary. It will also let you download the paper through a couple different, completely legal open access services. www.oa.mg
Sci-Hub (link updated August 2022) Finally, there’s Sci Hub . Science-Hub works in a completely different way than the other two: researchers, students, and other academics donate their institutional login to Schi-Hub, and when you search for a paper they download it through that account. After the articles has been downloaded they store a copy of it on their own servers. You can basically download 99% of all scientific articles and papers on SciHub. Just enter the DOI to download the papers you need for free from scihub. Shihub was launched by the researcher Alexandra Elbakyan in 2011 with the goal of providing free access to research to everyone, not only those who have the money to pay for journals. Many in the scientific community praise hub-sci / sciencehub for furthering the knowledge of humankind and helping academics from all over the world. shi hub has been sued many times by publishers like Elsevier but it is still accessible, for example by using a sci hub proxy.
You can find links to Sci-Hub on Wikipedia ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sci-Hub ) or WikiData ( https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Q21980377#P856 ).
Referencing and Writing Advice Unlocking Knowledge Getting the green light when using plagiarism detection software doesn’t mean you haven’t plagiarised.
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Research Paper Download Free
Research is a process to find a new dimension in the same field or topic. So young scholar has to read/finds related papers proposed by other authors. So scholar uses search engine platform to get Research Paper Download Free links, but as such platforms are general and do not provide filters to get the relevant papers. To resolve such issues during research, ABCD Index platform develop an article section that has a collection of good journal papers with abstract details and provide a simple search option for scholars to get papers of relevant field. This platform provides data filters that help to reach the more relevant content that users exactly need, such as
Get Download Link of Research Papers
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The main motive of this feature of the site is to provide the good content of the publisher to correct candidate who is looking for it. Our platform help scholars and publishers meet each other. By selecting of Open Access filter scholars are able to get Research Paper Download Free links of journals. Apart from this free link platform abstract option help them to read the article and have a little idea about the paper so before getting a site visit researchers to know that a journal paper is what they are looking for. Some of the steps of searching is mentioned below for the first time scholars:
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Scholars, researchers, reviewer, authors, etc. can use this free platform to complete their research work and allow people to know more about it.
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Best Websites to Download Research Papers for Free
Today, the average cost of downloading a research paper is roughly around $30. This is because of the present model, which has publicly funded research locked behind paywalls established by publishers, who don’t really add much extra value by themselves. As a result, many researchers and other people who are aware of this issue have been looking for a better alternative to this existing system.
In fact, some people even go to the length of claiming that this model is one of the greatest hindrances on the path of human progress today.
However, discussing that is not the purpose of this article. Rather, I’m intending to show you how to avoid paywalls and download research papers for free. Please be warned that accessing these sites is illegal in many countries, so be sure to conceal your identity by using a VPN like NordVPN , or choose from 50+ VPN options on Truely, a product aggregator site that collects reviews and ratings from multiple sources to find out which is the best product.
Returning to the good part, in this article, I will feature the 11 (not just 10) best websites that allow you to download quality peer-reviewed research papers without paying the exorbitant fees charged by the most prominent publishers today.
Best Websites to Download Research Papers for Free (Legally)
Disclaimer : Before we begin, I should mention that #1 & #2 websites listed here are technically illegal in some countries . However, thousands of academicians and researchers have praised these websites and believe that their services are not only justified but also important for the better of our world.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you to decide what’s right and wrong. Let’s now take a look at my choices for the best websites to download research papers for free.
Table of Contents
Let’s start with the list now.
You can download almost 99% of all scientific papers and articles in existence on Sci-Hub.
Note: Using Sci-Hub may not be legal in your country. Also, you will require a VPN to use this website. I recommend using NordVPN or AtlasVPN for the purpose.
Sci-Hub was originally launched by Alexandra Elbakyan, a Kazakhstani graduate student, in 2011. It is a website known for providing access to various academic articles and papers using educational institution access and its own collection of downloaded articles and papers. In fact, you can download almost 99% of all scientific papers and articles in existence on Sci-Hub.
Needless to say, Sci-Hub is one of the most incredibly controversial websites in existence. On numerous occasions, people have targeted it for copyright infringement. Many internet service providers (especially in developed countries) have blocked it at present. Sci-Hub’s own statistics show that the chances of a request for download being successful are 99%. It processes more than 200,000 requests every day.
Sci-Hub works in a notably different way than most other platforms listed here: students, researchers, and other academicians donate their institutional login to Sci-Hub. When you search for a paper, Sci-Hub downloads it through that account and stores a copy of it on its own servers.
You can download research papers from Sci-Hub by following the steps below:
- Visit Sci-Hub’s webpage . (Use a VPN to access it if blocked.)
- Type the full name, DOI, or URL of the research paper you are looking for.
- Click the red “open” button.
Library Genesis or LibGen is a vast database harboring a whopping 58 million science magazine files and more than 5 million free papers, complete journals, articles, and non-fiction books.
Note: You may require a VPN to use this website too. I recommend using NordVPN or AtlasVPN for this purpose.
In 2015, it was sued by Elsevier – one of the world’s most well-known publishers of medical, technical, and scientific research papers. However, that hasn’t led to anything as of now.
At present, many internet service providers have blocked Library Genesis. However, it is still accessible by virtue of its numerous mirrors.
You can find a research paper or book on Library Genesis by following the steps given below:
- Visit Library Genesis’ official website .
- Type the name of whatever you’re looking for into the search field, and click the “search!” button.
- Click on the name of a book or research paper in the list of results, and choose one of the available mirrors.
- Proceed to download the book or research paper and save it to your device.
OA.mg aims to make research more open and discoverable by providing direct download links to over 200 million research papers.
Its key mission is to help everyone become more productive at every stage of their academic work — from research to bibliography generation. By aggregating and combining all Open Access databases, they are able to guide you to the latest open access research as well as the research behind paywalls. If there isn’t a direct link, they’ll help you find a way to download it.
You can find research papers using OA.mg by following the following steps:
- Visit the following link: https://oa.mg
- Enter your keywords or DOI number in the search field available over there.
- Click the “search” button and wait for the results to turn up.
- In the list of results, download any research paper you need by clicking the download link.
21 million academic articles from more than 50,000 content repositories and publishers.
This is a colossal database that harbors over 21 million academic articles from more than 50,000 content repositories and publishers. The articles in database are mirrored from government resources and hence downloading those is legal.
The developers claim that they have around 80-85% of all scientific articles available in their archive. They are also supported by grants from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the National Science Foundation.
You can use the Chrome extension to easily access them anytime. For that, you just need to follow the steps given below:
- Visit https://unpaywall.org/products/extension .
- Click the “Add to Chrome” button.
- Click “Add to Chrome” on the Chrome Web Store page as well.
- Wait while the extension gets installed.
- Once you install it, the extension works automatically and turns up whenever you visit a paywalled research paper listed in Unpaywall’s open database. All you need to do is click the green Unpaywall button for the paper to open up immediately.
Unlike many other websites listed here, the services offered by Unpaywall are totally legal because it points to legal, author-posted manuscripts hosted on government and university web servers (generally known as Green Open Access manuscripts ).
As a matter of fact, Unpaywall is integrated into several search platforms, library systems, and other information products all across the world. It has been helping make scholarship more readily accessible to people around the globe.
Citationsy Archives allows you to search for journal articles and papers, download them, and (obviously) cite them in your projects.
Citationsy is a free to use tool but there are some limitations with the free plan. For just $9.99 per month ($4.99 if you are a student), you can get unlimited citations, references, bibliographies, word export and more. Citationsy Archives offers only 3-days trial but if you use promotion code GAURAVTIWARI , you can get premium version for free for a whole month.
Note that you can use Citationsy Archives with or without an account.
All you need is to enter a query, it will search for the same through all the research papers in the world and present the relevant matches to you. You can click on any of the results to see more details, and promptly site it from there itself.
This platform also enables you to download the paper through a few different, and completely legal, open access services.
Use Citationsy Archives from https://citationsy.com/archives/
Directory of Open Access Journals
Community-curated website that features several peer-reviewed, high-quality open access journals.
The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) is a community-curated website that features several peer-reviewed, high-quality open access journals. It was launched in 2003 with about 300 journals in its possession. Ever since, it has grown to harbor more than 10,000 open access journals spanning all areas of science, social science, medicine, humanities, and technology. The number of free articles featured on this platform is growing every day.
The DOAJ is maintained by Infrastructure Services for Open Access (IS4OA) – a non-profit charitable organization that wishes to offer the benefit of openly accessible publications and data to the global community of users. It asserts that open and wide distribution and dissemination of knowledge wil greatly benefit the human society all across the world.
Similar to Unpaywall, DOAJ is completely legal and its website is funded by sponsors, publishers, and non-publisher members. In order to find and download free research papers, follow the steps given below:
- Visit DOAJ’s official website.
- Enter your keywords into the search field in there, and press Enter.
- Choose the research paper you need to download
- Just above the abstract, you’ll see the “full text” button. Click it.
Open Access Button
Leverages public repositories of research papers to make publicly funded research freely accessible to one and all.
Open Access Button was founded in November 2013 by a group of students who were fed up of running into paywalls. It leverages public repositories of research papers to make publicly funded research freely accessible to one and all.
Open Access Button is quite similar to Unpaywall in terms of functioning. However, the two of them differ in one significant aspect: whenever Open Access Button notices that an article is not freely available, it automatically notifies the authors to share it by putting it into a repository. The more people try to find an article via this platform, the more requests an author gets.
You can use Open Access Button by downloading their browser extension. For that, simply follow the steps given below:
- Visit the following URL: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/open-access-button/gknkbkaapnhpmkcgkmdekdffgcddoiel?hl=en
- Install the Open Access Button browser extension by clicking the “Add to Chrome” button.
- Henceforth, if you are ever unable to access the research you require, just click on the Open Access Button to do it.
Don’t worry if you are not a Google Chrome user. You can still use the online version of Open Access Button by visiting the following link: https://openaccessbutton.org
Access to more than 49 million research papers and over 20 thousand journals in all areas of science.
ScienceOpen was established in 2013 by Alexander Grossman – a prominent physicist an professor of publishing management at the Leipzig University of Applied Sciences – and Tibor Tscheke – a software developer, content management specialist, and information scientist. It is a professional networking platform that is specially meant for scholars. It grants users access to more than 49 million research papers and over 20 thousand journals in all areas of science.
This platform is meant to explore new ways for opening up information to the scholarly community. Moreover, you can clearly see that the project has been achieving this goal gracefully so far.
In order to look for research papers using ScienceOpen, follow the steps given below:
- Visit the link: https://www.scienceopen.com/search
- Enter your keywords in the given search field. Apart from this, you can also search by journals, authors, publishers, collections, and so on.
Legal and flawless access to millions of open-access research papers.
CORE is known for maintaining a vast collection of open access research published in different journals and research repositories across the world. Its prime objective is to actively support the rights of citizens and the general public to access the results of research which they contributed towards by paying taxes. To accomplish this goal, it offers flawless access to millions of open access research papers.
You can find research papers using CORE by following the following steps:
- Visit the following link: https://core.ac.uk
- Enter your keywords in the search field available over there.
- In the list of results, download any research paper you need by clicking the “get PDF” button.
This free browser extension for Chrome grants you one-click access to various journal articles and papers in PDF format.
Basically, when you activate this tool, it finds the DOI of the paper from the present page and then proceeds to search for it. It begins by querying various Open Access repositories like OaDoi, SemanticScholar, ArXiV, and the Internet Archive.
The developers are working on a soon-to-be-released feature that allows you to set your university libraries domain in the settings. PaperPanda will then automatically search for the required paper through your library. If needed, you will be able to set a different custom domain in the settings.
I’ve included instructions for using this tool below:
- Install the PaperPanda extension for Google Chrome .
- Pin PaperPanda to your browser’s toolbar.
- While visiting a page for a research paper, click the tiny panda icon in the toolbar.
- PaperPanda will now find the PDF file for you. If needed, you can open “settings” and adjust the domain it uses to find your papers.
Education Resources Information Center (ERIC)
Contains not only journal publications but book sources and gray literature as well.
ERIC is a part of the United States Department of Education. It serves as a comprehensive archive of publications and is widely regarded as an excellent way of downloading research papers without paying a fee. It contains not only journal publications but book sources and gray literature as well.
Both the journal and non-journal material you’ll find over at ERIC are peer-reviewed and reliable. It adds new research publications sources to its index database system twice a year.
You can access ERIC by visiting its official website: https://eric.ed.gov/
It is common knowledge that research publication is an expensive field – both for researchers and readers. Most scientific studies are behind the paywall when the researcher refuses to pay the open-access publication fee. The average cost of downloading a research paper is about $30 – something not everyone might be able to afford. However, that’s what the websites listed in this article are meant to help you with.
However, before using any of these websites for downloading research papers for free, you must keep in mind that bypassing paywalls put up by paywalls is illegal in many parts of the world. Thus, you should consider using a VPN to protect your identity. Doing so extends a private network across a public network and allows you to send and receive data privately and securely.
Last update on 2023-12-04 using Amazon Product Advertising API.
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